In honour of Chris Harling: Husband, Father, friend and follower of Jesus whose faith stayed strong until his final hour
On Thursday evening Andy was with Chris and Louise at Briars Hill Home in Rugeley. Chris was restful and at peace. As the music of Rend Collective played in the background Andy & Louise talked about many things and Chris - holding his wife's hand - breathed his final breath on earth and went to be with our Lord and saviour.
We will never forget Chris. His friendship, his humour, his love of cars, his love of the Lord and his partnership with us in the work of Acorncamps. We were so excited when Chris and Louise agreed to move out to Hungary with us to establish the work of Acorncamps. God had provided us with the ideal family to partner together with us. Different to us in so many ways. Complementing our weaknesses, but united in the vision, aims and way forward of serving Christ in Hungary. We planned, prayed, disagreed, visited Hungary, learnt so much from each other. Then in December 2010 Chris became seriously ill and all our plans changed.
We will never understand why this happened? Why would it be in God's plan that Chris' life would be shortened. But Chris always said that God knows what he's doing. His (and Louise's) faith and trust in our saviour has inspired us both (and many many others). We will never forget our times together over more than a decade: crying, laughing, just being there: at home, at the hospital waiting rooms, at St. Giles Hospice and at Briars Hill House.
Chris would want us to pause and remember and reflect on his passing. He would want us to grieve, but not without hope. But then he'd want us to be back to business. The business of making sure young people in Hungary hear about our Lord Jesus Christ. We will aim to do that even more as we value the days God gives us all, and we will never forget Chris.
Chris, you were a great guy! Although I (Andy) know that you'd say, "nope I'm a sinner who's found a great Saviour!" As was often the case ... of course he was right.
- Chris: For his life, service of God, love for his family and for us, and his partnership in the work of Acorncamps.
- Hope: That is there in the midst of grief, and the reality of how Jesus is so very real and present at times like this. Psalm 23 is incredible.
- Providence: allowing Andy to be there with Chris & Louise on his final day
- the Christian family; for a number of Christians that God has put around the Harling family - who are real friends and continually there in the good days and the bad.
Please pray for …
- Louise, Jack (10) and Ava (8) as they cry, talk, grieve and come to terms with Chris finally going to glory. Pray they would know God's peace and keep trusting in Him.
- Us, as we cry, talk, and grieve the loss of such a great friend.
- Us (Andy & Zsófi) as we travel to the UK for the funeral and particularly for Andy, as he is looking after the funeral. Please also remember our kids staying in Hungary at that time.
Other date & items for prayer ...
Fri 13 Oct Trustees meeting and AGM (Sheffield)
Sun 15 Oct. Andy speaking at St. Paul's Hadley Wood Mission Partner Service and then meeting with friends from Christ Church Mayfair at their evening service.
Sat 21 Oct 2nd of 3 Conference, Training days for Youth leaders
w/c 23 Oct. Andy & Zsófi taking annual leave to catch up on life and have a rest
Sat 11 Nov 3rd of 3 Conference, Training days for Youth leaders
12-15 Nov Andy & Zsófi hoping to attend Hungarian Conference for Evangelical leaders (Hungarain ELF)
With lots of love
Andy, Zsófi, David, Réka & Emily